The history of ice cream

From China to Italy

More than 2 000 years ago, the Chinese began to make their first sorbet in containers filled with fruit juice and put in a mix of snow and saltpetre : the ice-cream maker ancestry.
At the same time, the arab world made preparations with snow brought back by camels from mountains. The name sorbet would come from the arab word "sarba".
The same technique was used by the Romans with snow brought in Roma from the Alps or Etna and kept in wells. Nero served to his guests a mix of snow/squeezed fruits/honey. This practice disappeared by the time.
Making sorbets started again in Italy due to Marco POLO who brought back in the XIIIe century from his trips the principle of the chinese ice-cream maker.


From Italy to France

From her italian childhood, Catherine de MEDICIS kept her love for ice cream. Her wedding with Henri II in the XVIe century contributed to put ice cream among food served to the court.
In the XVIIe century, ice keeping wells were built in Paris and Versailles in order to store the ice brought by the winter season.
Ice-cream consumption increased for well-to-do class thanks to Francesco PROCOPIO DEL COLTELLI who created in 1689 the café Procope with a hundred or so ice creams and sorbets.
MENON would be the first to have written ice-cream recipes in his book "Science du maître d'hôtel confiseur" from 1750. The discovery of refrigerating machines (1860) and of the pasteurization technic (1865) speeded up the development of ice-cream.


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Arriving in United States of America

Thomas JEFFERSON discovered ice creams while he was ambassador in Paris in 1785. Back to home with ice-cream molds in his luggages, he was elected president in 1801 and put ice in the White House menu. The oldest written recipe listed in the United States is attributed to Thomas JEFFERSON with a vanilla ice-cream recipe written from his hand.
From de 1810, Frederic TUDOR called "Ice King" developped in Boston the international trade of ice coming from New England. Nancy JOHNSON invented in 1843 the crank ice-cream maker and Jacob FUSSELL opened the first ice-cream factory in Baltimore in 1851.

Marco Polo
Marco Polo
Catherine de Medicis
Catherine de Medicis
Franceso Procopio
Francesco Procopio
Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson

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